Kansai Airport gears up for opening of new T1 international departure area

By Luke Barras-hill |

When the new international departure area in Terminal 1 opens on 5 December, passengers will be able to peruse four zones within the KIX Duty Free walkthrough store.

Kansai International Airport (KIX) will inaugurate its newly renovated Terminal 1 international departure area featuring a walkthrough duty free store on Tuesday 5 December.

Operator Kansai Airports, the consortium comprising Vinci Airports and Orix Corporation, will oversee a refreshed airside commercial space housing around 27 retail, F&B, boutique and service units, including what is reportedly Japan’s largest walkthrough duty free store at an airport courtesy of KIX Duty Free.

Situated after immigration and spanning approximately 2,500sq m, Kansai Airports Retail & Services run KIX Duty Free will house 341 brands across four zones: P&C, drinks, tobacco and confectionery (see image at footer).

Each category is based on a specific design iteration, allowing passengers to immerse themselves in spaces that are accented by strong links to Japan.

Among the variety of domestic and international brands available to shoppers will be revered sake brewers, plus labels that will make their first appearance in Japanese airport duty free.

Redeveloped pre-order service

Event spaces appear throughout the shop spotlighting new and recommended products and seasonal displays.

In the run-up to the walkthrough opening, KIX Duty Free revamped its pre-order website last month. This offers a wider assortment of products and online-only promotions (some pre-order brands will be available after the renovated T1 airside opening).

Available in four languages (Japanese, English, Traditional Chinese and Simplified Chinese), the new pre-order service carries online-only promotions and exclusive lottery sales for rare liquor.

The KIX Duty Free walkthrough shop, which at 2,500sq m is purportedly the largest at an international airport in Japan, will be unveiled on 5 December at the new Terminal 1 international airside area.

Beyond Kansai Airport, Kansai Airports Group “will continue to enhance its stores and services at each airport to satisfy many customers”, it added.

Alongside the duty free walkthrough store, the new T1 international departures area features a central plaza and four ‘Mood’ areas.

Kansai Airports announced the opening of several new stores landside on the second floor of KIX T1 this month.

Elsewhere, passengers will encounter a streamlined passport control process within a centralised immigration area, which was previously located in the north and south wings of the terminal.

In renovating T1, Kansai Airports is aiming to lift the capacity for international flights in expectation of higher passenger traffic volumes to the region.

The grand opening of the new commercial area in the T1 international departures area is set for Spring 2025.

Kansai Airports took over the operations of Kansai International Airport and Osaka International Airport from New Kansai International Airport Company and has been operating the two airports since April 2016.

Kansai Airports Kobe – Kansai Airports’ wholly-owned subsidiary – assumed control of the operations at Kobe Airport from Kobe City and started business as an operating company in April 2018.

TRBusiness has reached out to its sources and aims to bring your further comment on the T1 international airside opening in due course.

All images courtesy of Kansai Airports.

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